Whether your little one is one month, four months, ten months or even three years…
Truth? Sleep deprivation starts out in the hospital after baby arrives. Where instead of getting the peace and quiet you need to recover and wrap your head around the human you made with your body, there are people waking you up all hours of the night…
Checking your vitals.
Asking you what birth control you plan on taking (whhhyyy?!).
Making sure you’re feeding your baby every two hours.
Asking if you want to have professional photos taken.
And the list goes on!
Then you finally get home expecting a little bit of peace and quiet, but you’re really still only sleeping for 1.5 hour spurts (if you’re lucky) and waking up and needing to function to keep the baby alive all day long.
It’s exhausting and normal for anxiety to creep in as you prepare for bedtime night after night.
As infant and toddler sleep specialists, the focus is always about getting the child to start sleeping better. And that’s great, but what about us?! The baby seems relatively fine! We are the ones who are about to lose our minds!
Thankfully, once the child is sleeping well, rest for the entire family quickly follows.
Now, I don’t need to tell you how important sleep is. But just in case you’re wondering why you feel so moody or foggy or stressed, it’s probably because you’re not get enough quality zzz’s.
Our brain and body need sleep just like we need food!
We need food to function, to have energy, to help our bodies thrive. And the same goes for sleep since those hours of snoozing are when our bodies recover and recharge. As a new parent, it’s so important to remember that the quality of your sleep is as important as baby’s.
Unfortunately, we’ve been conditioned to view this sleep deprivation as a “badge of honor” or something that is a right of passage as a new parent. This should not be the case!
Because poor quality sleep is linked to a number of health issues for adults…
- Mood changes
- Decreased energy
- Memory issues
- Difficulty concentrating
- Weakened immunity
- High blood pressure
- Weight gain
As a new mom 6 years ago, I was NOT prepared for the sleep deprivation that was about to ensue. I am someone who needs her 8.5 hours each night to feel her best.
Thankfully, I found out about sleep training when my daughter was 4 months old and it changed my life. In a matter of a few nights we were all sleeping. Hallelujah!
Within the days and weeks that followed, I noticed that my mood changed drastically for the better. I had so much more energy. I felt like “me” again for the first time in months. Maybe a year? So much so that I started my sleep consulting certification a few days later and decided to make this my career. I want to help to bring this positive change to as many families as possible! We all deserve to feel how I felt when we finally started getting the sleep we needed as a family.
“You saved my marriage”, “I can finally function again!”, “I can’t tell you how good last night felt!”, etc.! This is what I love to hear from new parents. This is why I love what I do.
Perhaps you’re thinking, “This all sounds great, but I don’t want to leave my child to cry all night long!” I get it. I don’t either! I know that sleep training can have a negative connotation and that leaving your child to “cry it out” is selfish of the parents and detrimental to the child.
So let’s set the record straight!
Sleep training does NOT mean you have to use the cry it out method.
This is a common misconception! There are other methods to choose from and you can find one that is aligned with your cry tolerance. Teaching your child to sleep is something you do for your child, not to your child!
Good quality sleep is the goal.
That and the appropriate amount of sleep supports your child’s physical, cognitive, and emotional development. I also see children who start sleeping better, then start to eat better too! Sleep is the foundation of so much in our lives it is worth the time and investment to ensure the entire family is getting what they need.
So what is our #1 tip for children who are not sleeping well?
Late bedtimes are the biggest cause of multiple night wakings and early mornings. If your child is not sleeping well at night, MAKE. BEDTIME. EARLIER! Yes, it can seem counter-intuitive, but give it a shot! I’m confident it won’t disappoint.
The added benefit of an earlier bedtime? I know you do. You get that “me time” or “us time” back before you settle in for the night. During this time you can relax, have a glass of wine or a cozy beverage, get things done, all while not having to tend to your cute little human.
This time is critical for parents to start to feel like themselves again. Life is about balance. You love your child, and still need time for yourselves.
My goal as a sleep consultant is always to help bring you back to your best functioning, happiest self so you can show up as the parent you want to be for your new baby.